The Best of Italy

Winter is an amazing time for Italian wine in NYC.  January always kicks off with incredible Benvenuto Brunello event at Gotham Hall.  This year marked the 50th anniversary of the famous Brunello di Montalcino DOC and the 2011 vintage was unveiled from over 40 different wineries along with the 2010 Riserva, Rosso and Moscadello.

Of course coming after arguably the greatest vintage of Brunello ever the 2011 falls a little short. It doesn't have that rich powerful complexity of 2010; rather a softer, fruitier wine that actually makes it accessible for just about any palate. On the heels of Benvenuto came Italian Wine week with Vinitaly International and Tre Biccieri events.

I was really surprised by the intensity of the Mirabella Saten made from 100% Chardonnay and the Demetra which had a strange yeasty aroma that I've never had in a Prosecco before...

...and the gorgeous Severus (no affiliation with Harry Potter) from Podere Marcampo made from 100% Sangiovese aged in French Oak barrels for one year.  If I ever make it to Volterra their restaurant Del Duca is at the very top of my dining list.

And once again beer made an appearance this year from Birrifico San Michele.  They brought three different brews a chestnut beer Norma, a pale ale Carmen and Aida a smokey, rauchbier perfect for pairing with Italian cured meats.

The Tre Biccieri event was filled with hundreds of amazing wines with a heavy emphasis on prosecco like the Ca'del Bosco a sparkling blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Nero and Pinot Bianco with a lovely toasted almond and vanilla flavor...

...and of course all of the wonderful sparkling's from Ruggeri.  So many wonderful wines and so many great producer; these events are always - Salute!